Monday, May 25, 2009

Um...yeah, Don't Do That

I was chatting with a friend of my parents who I have known since I was five. We chat weekly as they are like second parents to my family. They have been retired for several years and belong to different retirees' groups. I was a bit surprised by a complaint she brought up for a second time. I tried to ignore it the first time and I didn't say anything this time, but seriously - you do not do this.

It seems this one group of 26 likes to go out to dinner. Nothing fancy - just a local joint of tex-mex, pizza or subs. They go about once a month and so far she has added three restaurants to her list of ones she will never return to.

Among her complaints? It takes the resturant to long to seat them, their food always comes out cold or has to be sent back and it is just too hard to receive refills on their beverages in a timely fashion.

I did ask her a few things the first time she brought this up, such as:

  • What day of the week do you go? Tuesdays or Wednesdays [a typically slow night in restaurant land]
  • How many waiters do they assign you? Usually one or two, but she said sometimes that is all that is in the restaurant on the night they visit. Remember these are small Mom & Pop type places, not chains.
  • Did anyone ask to have the meals staggered coming out of the kitchen, so they could be served hot? No, they wanted to eat together. That would be unacceptable she said. [Well, so is cold food?]
  • Do you let the restaurant know you are coming, i.e. reservations at least a day in advance? No, it is usually a spur of the moment thing with this group.

The last one boggles my mind. Dropping in with 26 dinners? Unannounced? oooookay. Understand that I love this woman. Normally she is incredibly kind and considerate. She is usually on the ball about these types of situations, but seriously? She does not have a clue that service is not going to be all it can be when you surprise a small restaurant with a party of 26 and insist on having all your food served at the same time and expect the kitchen to get 26 different meals out hot. I can't even imagine one poor waiter trying to wrangle this group, can you? Two is stretching it, but really?

Well I had to ask one more question. Being a former waitress I knew the answer to this before I asked, but I just had to - "So, Mrs. Q do you all go on the same bill or do you get separate checks?"

"Oh no Skippy. We always get separate checks that way they can't add the automatic tip on there."

God love her.

> headdesk <

1 comment:

Amy said...

I would have loved to hear your inner thoughts while you were talking to her.